The City of Colorado Springs Public Works Department is leading the preliminary design phase of the US Hwy 24 and Peterson Road/Boulevard Interchange Design Planning Project. The project will provide preliminary design and environmental clearance required to reconstruct the US 24/Peterson Boulevard Interchange to provide a safer, more secure, and more efficient transition to the Peterson SFB North Gate. The project will support Peterson Space Force Base (SFB) access control in day-to-day and emergency operations and account for increased traffic capacity on the adjacent roadways associated with planned growth in the Pikes Peak region. The project will consider complete transportation options within the adjacent corridors to include bus and bicycle lanes, sidewalks, and trails.
The interchange of US Highway 24 and Peterson Road experiences extreme congestion during peak traffic hours. Located on the City’s east side, it has been subject to extensive study in recent years.
In 2017, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) conducted a Planning and Environmental Linkage (PEL) study of US 24 in that area and to the east. A PEL identifies transportation issues and environmental concerns so officials can make informed planning and design decisions in the future. This study identified the US 24/Peterson Road interchange as needing improvements to meet future traffic and regional growth projections.
In 2018, the Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments (PPACG) conducted a Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) to examine the impacts of existing and future land uses and missions of the five military installations in the Pikes Peak region, including Peterson Space Force Base. The study was a community-driven, cooperative, strategic planning process among the five installations, the surrounding local jurisdictions, and the State of Colorado. The study identified US Highway 24 as a primary route to Peterson SFB.
Following these studies, the Peterson Gateway Metropolitan District, nestled between Peterson Space Force Base and US 24, conducted a 2019 study which identified dual roundabouts on the Peterson Road approaches to US 24 as their preferred alternative to easing traffic congestion in the area.
These studies were cited in a grant application by PPACG to the federal Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation (OLDCC) for preliminary engineering and associated work to evaluate viable alternatives at the interchange and select a preferred alternative for future funding. The grant was awarded to PPACG by the OLDCC, and work is now under way to fulfill the goals of the grant.
Alternative Analysis and Preliminary Engineering Phase
The City of Colorado Springs is managing the planning and engineering-focused project on behalf of PPACG. A stakeholder working group of government agencies includes PPACG, the City of Colorado Springs, OLDCC, the Local Defense Mission Task Force, Peterson SFB, CDOT, El Paso County, and other local transportation stakeholders.
The team is currently completing the alternatives analysis portion of the grant to identify the optimal intersection configuration. By Spring 2023, the project team expects to have preliminary engineering work completed to select a preferred alternative. The future interchange design will:
- Account for increased traffic capacity associated with planned regional growth
- Add and improve safety and connectivity for non-motorized users (pedestrians, bicyclists, and trail users)
- Provide accommodations for public transit
- Reduce traffic congestion at the intersections during peak times
- Improve stormwater drainage, including water runoff quality
- Support Peterson SFB access control in day-to-day and emergency operations
- Minimize impacts to surrounding properties and infrastructure
The project team will meet with key stakeholders during the preliminary design process. Preliminary design findings will be shared at a public open house in 2023 and stakeholders will be able to provide input for incorporation into the next phase of design.
For questions regarding the project, please reach out to Public Involvement lead, George Hayward.
Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation Grant to PPACG for preliminary design.